Friday, September 28, 2012

Book Binding Samples and Examples...

Hello Dear Blog Readers! I've got another giveaway at the end of this blog post and Monday marks the start of Blogtoberfest and my 400th blog post!! I've got a fun giveaway item in store for that post, but be sure to read on to see what's being given away for today...

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Today is the big day...

Today is the day I teach my very first workshop in book binding!

I've been prepping book binding packets and making notes for my lectures, piling my artful books together to bring along for sharing, and I've been making samples to time how long it will take to bind the two types of booklets I've planned on, as well time the art techniques we will be doing...

Collage covers in progress for samples and timing the art technique process...

I've prepped paper scraps to use for the mixed-media techniques section of the workshop...


I've timed how long it will take to work through the various mixed-media art techniques I will share... 

Collage cover booklet sample of mixed media art techniques - it will be filled with various art papers and ephemera when completed

I have timed the traditional binding portion of the workshop...

Sample of the multi-stitch binding technique - the actual kit will be made using an artful blank greeting card

I also have a slideshow presentation to share the work of some mixed-media book artists I admire, who have graciously given their permission for me to use photos of their work...I am so honored that they said yes!

I have completed samples for the girls to view before the workshop begins and I will have two more when the workshop is over since I will be demonstrating along with them...

A completed sample to show and tell!

I have made quite a few samples, actually...

This sample is a smaller size, cut before I choose to work with a slightly larger measurement

However, I can't keep every sample I make so...I will give two of them away!

Large booklet measures approximately 4" x 5 3/4", small booklet measures 3" square

Read on to learn how you can win this fun duo of hand bound booklets you can use for 'field notes', or for writing down some special dreams you have...

Rules for entering this giveaway...

The giveaway is open to all readers from near or far
You must leave a comment to enter the giveaway
Your comment will be to share a treasured dream you have*
Comments will close at 12pm Pacific Standard Time on SUNDAY September 30**
The winner will be announced on Monday October 1st

OH! And if you want a bonus surprise goodie, follow my blog and let me know you have joined the "Tribe Of Creative Kindred Spirits"! 

Thanks for stopping by and for reading my blog! Good luck to all who enter the giveaway and be sure to return on Monday October 1st to celebrate the start of Blogtoberfest 2012 and my 400th blog post!

* -  one of my dreams is finally happening: I'm finding a way to use my creativity and experience to earn a living by sharing something I love with others!

** - All giveaway winners from Monday, Wednesday AND today will be announced on Monday October 1st, 2012 - be sure to check in and see if you have won or to find out what is being given away on blog post 400!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Revisiting Some Book Bindings in Progress

Hello Dear Blog Readers! I have only two more posts until I reach number 400 and since I decided to have a giveaway with each post leading up to 400, this blog post will have a giveaway at the end of it...and if you haven't figure it out by now, each post contains a 'hint' of what will be given away at the end, so be sure to keep reading...

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As I've been preparing for my upcoming book binding workshop, I've been gathering some books to bring and share as examples of traditional binding or examples of art books...some of them are my own hand bound books in various stages of assembly...


Some of you may remember the art book I created as an auction piece for City Hearts, an organization I've donated artwork to so they could use it during their annual fundraiser. After making the donation book, I played around with making different sizes, but I haven't got around to finishing them...


I'm not sure why I didn't complete them - I love the papers I used and how I used them...


But there was one book that was bound a little tightly which may be why I stopped working on them. I never made notes as I created the first book so I've been re-inventing my wheel of hand bound books that feature an exposed spine!* However, it is still a nice little book and I think it's time it found a home with someone who loves books, whether traditional or artful...


I am going to giveaway this little hand bound book that will be decorated by me using one of my bottle cap embellishments...


How can you win this unique hand bound book art book? Read on to learn how...please note that all giveaway winners for this weeks giveaways will be announced on Monday October 1st, the first day of Blogtoberfest, which is also the day of my 400th blog post! That should be a big giveaway and I'm working out the details for that one...


Rules for entering this weeks giveaway...

The giveaway is open to all readers from near or far
You must leave a comment to enter the giveaway
Your comment will be about your all time favorite book you've ever read**
Comments will close at 12pm Pacific Standard Time on SATURDAY September 29***
The winner will be announced on Monday October 1st

OH! And if you want a bonus surprise goodie, follow my blog and let me know you have joined the "Tribe Of Creative Kindred Spirits"! 

Thanks for stopping by and for reading my blog! Good luck to all who enter the giveaway and remember to check back soon for another post and giveaway - there are only TWO posts left before I reach 400!



* - Maybe I should stop making books with exposed spines??? At least for now ;)
** - one of my all-time favorite books I like to read over and over is "Little Women" =-)
*** - The remaining giveaway winners for this week will have shorter commenting deadlines so they can all be announced on Monday October 1st which is the first day of Blogtoberfest =-)

Monday, September 24, 2012

Prepping for My First Book Binding Workshop

Hello Dear Blog Readers! There is a lot happening and it's starting to ramp up so this week will be pretty packed - I've got my first book binding workshop this week, and Blogtoberfest is just around the corner, as well as my 400th blog post, both of which are converging! I will post again this week in the hopes that my 400th blog post will coincide with the start of this years special edition of Blogtoberfest and I've got some fun items I'll be giving away this week to some lucky blog readers. In the meantime, here is what has been happening lately in my creative adventures, so please do continue reading...

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I have mentioned that I have a workshop taking place and it will be at the end of this week! It's a book binding workshop and I will be teaching a Girl Scout troop about book arts and book binding. I've been prepping the materials they will use to learn to bind two simple booklets using a variety of papers to make them...


One booklet will be made from some artful blank greeting cards to make a simple book with a mix of papers to make what I'm calling a "field notebook". The other booklet will be more of an 'art book' filled with artful papers...


The blank white paper is actually poster board that they will use to explore some fun artist techniques to make the book cover. I'm including a lecture with a photo slide show and I'll have examples of art books, altered books and hand-bound books, all from my collection of books I've made, bought or books made by friends and fellow book artists...I am getting excited about this workshop!

I've spent a lot of time this week choosing and cutting papers to measure for each book "kit" and I am glad that I have a good sized paper cutter to do this - in fact, it looks a lot like THIS ONE (though not as beat up!). I did purchase a small portable paper cutter to travel with, that I used to take with me to my old office job, but it only accommodates 12" sheets and is not meant for LOTS of paper cutting...


Recently, my dear boyfriend brought back a paper cutter from his office, which has moved into a new space. They were cleaning out lots of office equipment and supplies, so he brought this home for me thinking I could use it...


He was right - I COULD use this paper cutter and began using it last weekend, cutting the blank poster board into booklet covers, as well as cutting other little odds and ends, while hanging out with him at his humble abode. It is a great paper cutter and still portable despite being larger than my other little paper cutter...


I realized that I no longer need the small, portable paper cutter, so I am going to give this away to someone who would like a small portable paper cutter for their paper crafting. I will also send along some papers from my paper collection, and if you look at the first two photos, you can see you will receive some fun paper and paper scraps for your crafting pleasure!

Would you like to win this paper cutter and fun paper for craft projects? Read on...but first the winner of last weeks giveaway...

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There were some lovely comments last week from folks sharing some of their current obsessions but the comment that intrigued me is from Laura Gaffke:
My latest obsession is "listening". I tying to pay more attention to my intuition which is something I struggle with. I have been trying to create more quiet time for myself by taking walks, sketching and writing. It is here that I can actually "hear" myself.
Congratulations Laura! Please contact me so I can send out the mitts to you and perhaps you can use them for your outdoor walks in the cold months ahead...

And now the rules for entering this weeks giveaway...

The giveaway is open to all readers from near or far
You must leave a comment to enter the giveaway
Your comment will be about what crafts you like to make that use PAPER*
Comments will close at 12pm Pacific Standard Time on Friday September 28
The winner will be announced on Monday October 1st**

OH! And if you want a bonus surprise goodie, follow my blog and let me know you have joined the "Tribe Of Creative Kindred Spirits"! 

Thanks for stopping by and for reading my blog! Good luck to all who enter the giveaway and remember to check back soon for another post and giveaway. There are only 3 more posts to go before the 400th blog post and the excitement is building!
* - for example, maybe you like to make greeting cards, or you like scrap-booking, or altering books with collage...
** - The remaining giveaway winners for this week will have shorter commenting deadlines so they can all be announced on Monday October 1st which is the first day of Blogtoberfest =-)

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

The Sewing Continues...Along with some Knitting

Hello Dear Blog Readers! I've made some time to write up a post and share some pictures of the work I've been doing recently...and figuring out another giveaway for this week! Please keep reading to see what I've been up to and what the next giveaway will be. Only four more posts until I reach 400!

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I mentioned last week sewing up some tunics for a Very Special Client. I completed two new tunics and though I gave you a peek at one of them, I'm sharing full views of the completed garments...which were well received by my Very Special Client!

Here is last weeks peek...


...and here is the full view...This view's for you Mel! ;)



This is the other tunic I completed...


I REALLY like the way this tunic turned out, so much so that I may just use this pattern to make one for myself!

And here is a peek at the remaining dresses that will be converted into similar tunics for my Very Special Client...



These dresses had some interesting details with ribbon and buttons sewn inside the seams to create a 'billow' effect when they are buttoned up; this was incorporated into the new tunics as I cut the dresses and sewed them up. I will try to get a picture of one in 'billow' mode as the tunics are completed...

In case you're wondering what happened to the top portion of the dresses from the other tunics I made, here is what I did with them:


I finished off the edges to make it a tank top that is being worn by the clients very stylish daughter! I'm so glad this idea was well received - it seemed a shame to throw the top portion away when I knew it could be put to good use =-)


In the meantime I thought I'd share some images of a knitting project I've been working at for the last few months: my very first lace shawl!


For the new readers that have recently joined in my creative adventures, I have shared pictures of my favorite thing to knit - fingerless mitt's and I've been known to give some of them away. Many of my mitts are of my own design and I knit so many that I may have to start selling some of them. After all, there are only so many days I can actually wear them in sunny California!


One of the things I love about knitting mitts is that they often go by quickly, even if I am making notes as I go along...


...they don't take up much yarn and there is often enough left over to make up another pair in a similar style with the addition of a new contrast yarn...


However, a few months back I was smitten by a shawl pattern worn by a knitting shop employee who raved about the Nefertum shawl pattern designed by Kirsten Kapur that is available for sale on Ravelry...

Later that week, my LYS newsletter shared images of two shawls and when I found them on display, I was smitten by those too!! Before long I was on the verge of a new obsession with shawls. I have been working away at the Traveling Companion Shawl (a Ravelry freebie) and have made some progress...


I am very excited at the way it's turning out and I can't wait to begin working on the Nefertum shawl; however, this is one time I will NOT have more than one project going at a time! I'll share the completed shawl with you all and I hope this will be in time for my birthday in November =-)

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Now for the winner of last weeks giveaway...there were some great comments last week from folks sharing why they loved sewing or knitting and some of you do both as I do! But the winner for last weeks giveaway is Laura Catherine, who has two blogs - one for online marketing and one sharing her creative projects. It seems she is quite the creative beast herself!

Congratulations Laura! Please send me your address and let me know if you want the sewing book or the knitting book and I'll include some fabric or yarn from my stash to go along...

And now for today's giveaway...

I'm giving away a pair of knitted mitts and this is the pair I'm giving away:


How can you win this lovely pair of mitts?? Read on...

Rules for entering the giveaway...

The giveaway is open to all readers from near or far
You must leave a comment to enter the giveaway
Your comment will be about a current obsession you have, crafting or otherwise!*
Comments will close at 12pm Pacific Standard Time on Friday September 21
The winner will be announced at the end of the next blog post...which will be Monday or Tuesday of next week

OH! And if you want a bonus surprise goodie, follow my blog and let me know you have joined the "Tribe Of Creative Kindred Spirits"! 

Thanks for stopping by and for reading my blog! Good luck to all who enter the giveaway!

* -  For example, I have an obsession with film "Julie and Julia" and love watching it over and over!

Monday, September 10, 2012

Sewing Away...

Hello Dear Blog Readers! It's another busy week with more busy-ness ahead of me, but I'll be posting the winner of last weeks giveaway, along with the giveaway item for this week at the end of the post...in the meantime, here is what I've been working on this week...

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It's been another busy week for me as I've been working on a sewing project for a Very Special Client. Last week I shared some images of the fabrics I've been working with:


These fabrics are actually ready-to-wear dresses that are being cut up to make a different garment altogether. It has been a bit tricky to accomplish, but I've been meeting the challenges that have come up, such as creating patterns that fit the client, and insuring that the patterns can fit into the amount of fabric we have to work with.

I usually try to make a sample of a pattern first - to insure the pattern works as it should and to make any fit adjustments that might be needed. Here is a sample that I made using a pattern made from an existing garment the client had and loved wearing...


The original garment is made from knit fabric as is the sample above. I am currently attempting to use this pattern with woven fabric, which has been a bit challenging. Here is fabric being used for a woven fabric version, which will be made with a longer sleeve variation...


Here is what the finished garment looked like before the client fitting took place:


The finished garment was taken to the client for a fitting and some adjustments were needed, which I am currently working on...I also had other tunic/dress samples made up in muslin for fitting and many of them worked out quite well. Those patterns are in process of being used for more garments to be made from the ready-to-wear dresses and from fabric the client will buy in the future. Here is a peek at another tunic/dress that I've been working on:


I'll share a full view of this garment soon - it has a story all it's own!

It has been a rough week getting these garments completed since I had an emergency root canal during the week! It has thrown off my regular schedule and it has also thrown me off in general with sleep patterns and ability to focus. Luckily, the hardest part of the root canal is over and it will be completed with a crown by the end of the week, but I still have a lot of work to finish, not the least of which is a special workshop I'm conducting in two weeks...

Due to a packed schedule, I may not be able to post next week, but I'm still having a giveaway for this week as I countdown to my 400th blog post - only 5 more posts until I reach 400!

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Now for the winner of last weeks giveaway...there were only two comments from last week and they both addressed the theme of favorite art supplies to use; however only one commenter got their comment in by the deadline so this weeks winner is Mel from "I Speak Melsh"*! I'll be sending along your goodies at the end of the week Mel...

And now for today's giveaway...

I'm still cleaning and clearing art supplies and books so this week you have a choice from one of two books up for grabs:


The winner of this giveaway has a choice of a sewing craft book or a knitting craft book!


This sewing craft book, Home Sweet Sewn, is filled with many lovely craft projects for the home...you can take a peek inside the book at Amazon =-)


And this knitting craft book, Knitting Little Luxuries by Louise Harding, is filled with lovely projects to knit...you can peek at some of them through Amazon...

The winner will choose the book they desire and they will also get some wonderful fabric scraps from my stash OR yarns and knitting needles from my stash, depending upon the book they choose. The book that is not chosen will be given away later during the countdown. How can you win some of this creative goodness?? Read on for the rules of the giveaway...

Rules for entering the giveaway...

The giveaway is open to all readers from near or far
You must leave a comment to enter the giveaway
Your comment will be whether you love sewing or knitting and WHY
Comments will close at 12pm Pacific Standard Time on Friday September 14
The winner will be announced at the end of the next blog post...which will be in approximately two weeks due to my creative work schedule

OH! And if you want a bonus surprise goodie, follow my blog and let me know you have joined the "Tribe Of Creative Kindred Spirits"! 

Thanks for stopping by and for reading my blog! Good luck to all who enter the giveaway!


* - I was unable to link to Mel's blog due to technical glitches - sorry Mel! =-\

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Cleaning and Clearing - Art Supplies & Books...

Hello Dear Blog Readers! I meant to post yesterday but decided to take a rest for Labor Day instead ;) I'll be announcing the winner of last weeks giveaway and announcing the giveaway for this week at the end of the post so read on, won't you...?

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I've been a busy bee working on several things at once, such as working on last weeks giveaway item, the "Reflecting Mirror", a collage piece that was inspired by my participation in "Face Value: Mirror Portraits" a photography project by local photographer Juan Luis Garcia. Here is a shot of how the mirror collage has turned out...


I've also been sewing some garments for a very special client. This is what my sewing table has been looking like while making patterns...


And these are the lovely fabrics I get to work with...


One of the fun things about working with clients that have such great taste in fabric is that I get fabulous scraps to play with when the project is over! You can bet some of these fabrics will work their way into my Fabric Scrap Book in due time.

One thing I have not had much time to do is cleaning and clearing in my home, which is one of my big on-going projects. Though I haven't had much time to do a lot of cleaning and clearing, I have been picking my way through many of my books, including my craft books:

You may not be able to tell from this photo but there are stacks of boxes filled with books under my sewing table - they're hiding behind the two boxes you can actually see!

It's not always easy for me to part with books since I love them so much! But sometimes I like trading in books I no longer need or use in order to get more books that I can use ;)

A vintage metal bookcase I acquired at a local flea market this summer - a mix of art and craft books with a few vintage tins from my collection, topped with a tool box filled with...what else? My art tools!

Besides going through my craft books, I've been slowly organizing my art supplies in the many vintage tins I've been collecting since last summer for this purpose.  I've also been going through my many, many supplies in the course of all the organizing and I am finding that I have quite a lot of supplies that I won't be using in the near future, if at all...

Some of the vintage tins from my collection are housing supplies like paints, pens, color pencils, washi tape, ink stamps and scraps of vintage lace

Some of the supplies I've been going through are my collection of rubber stamps. Though I think I have a lot of rubber stamps, I've met other artists that have far more than I do! Here is a peek at how I am currently organizing my rubber stamp collection...yes, that is a vintage letterpress/typesetting drawer you see there! Don't be jealous ;)

A vintage letterpress/typesetting drawer holds contemporary rubber stamps while a vintage rubber stamp stand holds old-school handled rubber stamps I've had specially made for my use

This plastic rubber stamp bin sits atop a small wood cabinet filled with ink pads large and small...and a few more rubber stamp sets!

As with my books, it's hard to part with fun art supplies, until I realize that if I let go of things I no longer need or want, it will make room for supplies I'd love to work with...and there are always new supplies I hear about that I want to work with!

Of course, I also realized that the best way to let go of these things is to give them away to my creative blog readers!! And that is what I will do...

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Now for the winner of last weeks giveaway...there were a few comments from last week and two of them addressed the theme about what you see when you look in the mirror. It was hard to decide but this week's winner is Heidi from the blog "As I Journal thru Life"! Heidi will also receive an extra goodie for joining the "Tribe of Creative Kindred Spirits". Congratulations to Heidi on winning the "Reflecting Mirror" =-)

And now for today's giveaway!

This week I'm giving away a craft book and supplies...based on rubber stamps!


I'm giving away the book "Stamp Artistry" which is written by Rice Freeman-Zachary*. It's a great book filled with some fantastic craft projects that utilize rubber stamps. Of course, it's no fun to have a book about rubber stamping if you don't have any rubber stamps, so I'm giving away some of my rubber stamps to go with this great book...

Rubber stamps for your creative use...

You can use these rubber stamps for the craft projects in the book or use them for your own creative projects such card making or scrap-booking. How you choose to use the rubber stamps can be as limitless as your imagination! How can you win this bundle of creative goodness? Read on...

Rules for entering the giveaway...

The giveaway is open to all readers from near or far
You must leave a comment to enter the giveaway
Your comment will be about what some of your favorite creative supplies are
Comments will close at 12pm Pacific Standard Time on Friday September 7
The winner will be announced at the end of the next blog post...which will be in approximately one week

OH! And if you want a bonus surprise goodie, follow my blog and let me know you have joined the "Tribe Of Creative Kindred Spirits"! 

Thanks for stopping by and for reading my blog! Good luck to all who enter the giveaway!

* - I was unsure of how to add the double dots over Rice's name (which is apparently called an 'umlaut') - my apologies for the omission!